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regular-article-logo Monday, 27 May 2024

Shehbaz likely to be next Pakistan PM: PML-N coalition enjoys ‘two-thirds majority’

PML-N Information Secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb has said that party supremo Nawaz Sharif has nominated the party president and his younger brother Shehbaz Sharif, 72, for the post of the country’s Prime Minister

PTI Karachi Published 15.02.24, 08:54 AM
Former Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif at a press conference in Lahore on Tuesday.

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif at a press conference in Lahore on Tuesday. AP/PTI

Shehbaz Sharif, the younger brother of former Premier Nawaz Sharif, is expected to become Pakistan's new Prime Minister as the coalition of leading political parties led by them is set to comfortably cross the simple majority mark to form the next government after elections produced a split mandate.

In a surprise move, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on Tuesday night nominated Shehbaz as the Prime Ministerial candidate instead of the party supremo and three-time former Premier Nawaz Sharif.

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Earlier, Shehbaz along with Asif Ali Zardari of Pakistan Peoples Party, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui of Muttahida Qaumi Movement Pakistan (MQM-P) met at the residence of Shujaat Hussain of Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) for a consultative meeting and agreed on government formation.

“Today we have united to tell the nation that we all accept the split mandate. I am thankful to Zardari and Bilawal (Bhutto) that they decided for their party to vote for the PML-N,” he said.

PML-N Information Secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb has said that party supremo Nawaz Sharif has nominated the party president and his younger brother Shehbaz Sharif, 72, for the post of the country’s Prime Minister.

She added that PML-N Senior vice-president Maryam Nawaz was nominated for the post of Punjab’s chief minister.

"Nawaz Sharif has thanked the political parties which provided support to the PML-N (in forming the upcoming government) and expressed hope that through such decisions Pakistan will come out of crises," she said.

Shehbaz, 72, who was Prime Minister after the Imran Khan-led government was ousted in April 2022, said the other parties that joined hands with the PML-N enjoyed “almost 2/3 majority” of the parliament after the elections. He also said that the new government would pull the country out of trouble.

According to the Election Commission of Pakistan’s tally, the total number of general seats won by the six parties — the PML-N, PPP, MQM-P, PML-Q, IPP (Istehkam-e-Pakistan Party) and Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) which announced their plans to form a coalition led by Shehbaz — comes to 152.

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